Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, federal and local governments have adopted varying moratoria on evictions, enacted as emergency legislative protections for tenants facing eviction. The federal moratorium on eviction, promulgated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is set to expire on July 31. While the Supreme Court recently left the moratorium in place, the Court signaled that it would likely be held unconstitutional if extended and challenged again. With the sole federal moratorium expiring, state and local protections may remain in effect; however, many of these local orders are also beginning to expire. Washington, DC’s eviction moratorium, one of the most tenant-friendly pieces of emergency legislation in the country, is one such example, beginning a phaseout process that allows the pace of evictions to slowly begin throughout 2021 before a final legislative sunset in February 2022.
Late last week a federal district court judge for the District of Columbia held that the nationwide eviction moratorium issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) went beyond the agency’s statutory authority and vacated it nationwide. This decision effectively expanded a similar decision by a Texas federal court last month that found the CDC’s moratorium was an improper use of federal power but limited its decision to the litigants to that case and declined to vacate the CDC order.